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The 7 dream jobs every New Yorker wishes they had

Will Gleason
Written by
Will Gleason

New York is a city that takes work very seriously. If you’re not looking for a job, then you’re usually wondering how much better other people have it than you. As a world-class destination for media, finance and the arts, however, there are a few New York jobs that pretty much everyone can agree would be a dream come true. (Except for the people who, you know, actually do them.)

1. Performer in a long-running Broadway show
Who wouldn’t want to see their name in lights? Getting a starring role on Broadway has been a New Yorker dream job for over a century, and the talented denizens of the Great White Way still manage to inspire envy to this day. Not to mention the swings and understudies who basically get paid to sit around all night just in case someone gets hurt. Being a human insurance policy has never looked so glamorous.

2. Restaurant critic that's still anonymous
Getting paid to eat for free? Where do we sign? It may be true that the day-to-day responsibilities of being a restaurant and food critic are more stressful than they appear in films and TV (we know, we kind of work with one), at the end of the day you’re still getting a table at some of the best restaurants in town and trying tons of amazing new dishes. It’s a foodie’s dream come true. Just make sure, you're not instantly recognizable. Otherwise, you'll never have a normal experience in a restaurant again.

3. Silicon Alley website designer
If there’s one exceedingly marketable skill in modern-day New York, it’s knowing how to code. (It’s on our to-do list, okay?) Not only can you make bank, but if you’re designing websites for clients remotely, you can do it at home in your PJs. Even if you have to go into an office, everyone knows start-ups have the coolest spaces in New York. That’s true, right? We’re just gonna trust ‘90s romantic comedies on this one.

4. Well-paid travel journalist
New York is an amazing place, but sometimes you just have to get out of town for a bit. With this job, you could get paid to do it. And take your work with you! It’s a New Yorker’s dream come true. Watch out, Samantha Brown. We’re coming for that throne. Eat, pray, love? D. All of the above.

5. Smorgasburg vendor
Dreaming of being a chef is so early aughts. These days, everyone wants to cook up their own business. It sometimes seems like you're just a few really productive weekends away from setting up your stand of gluten-free cupcake/donut hybrids at Smorgasburg or convincing a local coffee shop to start stocking your locally-sourced cheese balls. Just have to figure out that packaging first...

6. Hedge fund manager
All those beautiful Brooklyn Heights brownstones we drool over, all those expensive meals we wish we could afford, all those Broadway play tickets—that would all but just a drop in the bucket if we made a hedge fund salary. Yeah, you have to work long finance hours to get there, but doesn’t that income sound amazing? The city (and the world) would be your oyster. Who cares that numbers aren’t your thing?

7. Critically-acclaimed novelist
What a life, to just tote your laptop to cafes and libraries, and just write whatever comes to mind. And the proceeds from your last novel are funding that Park Slope townhouse, so no need to worry about when your next paycheck is coming. Plus, we imagine all the literary powerhouses in the city hang out together, exchanging witty banter over coffee and cocktails and talking about their next projects. Now if only a publisher would accept that manuscript you’ve been working on...

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